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Dead 500 ELM


New Member

I have just been given a 500 ELM body by a photographer friend of mine.
I have been using a 503 CW since 2002, with three lenses (50, 80, 150mm).

Of course the batteries of the 500 ELM are flat, and according to the whitish dust covering one of them I would tend to think they are dead.

I have the charger, terminated by a 5 pin DIN connector.

Could someone help me with "How to check wether this body has a chance to start again?

First questionsx
What is the DIN connector pinout? Is there a chance to power the body from the DIN connector without any battery in the body?
According to my first checks, it should be 6V powered, the two batteries are paralleled.
I guess that if connect 4 1.5V batteries in serie I will get 6V. I should maybe connect the + to the bottom contact deep into the body where the battery + normaly goes. The - should be connected to the sping loaded lug that its the batteries case cover contact...

Well I'll set all knobs to "O" and see what happens.

Thanks for your help.


General advice if the ELM has been out of service for a while:
Clean the contacts of the battery lid, check the fuse at the rh side of the battery compartment place one battery in the camera and charge that battery for 12-14 hours. Move the switch marked L,O,T at the rh side to L position before you start charging the battery.
If there is some life left in the battery it should be able to operate the camera after that time.
To operate the camera move the switch to O position.

L means lock, O means operate and T is for long exposures.

If you do not want to wait you can connect a small 9V block battery to the DIN socket at the side of the camera.
+ should go to pin 1, negative should go to pin 5.
Do not worry about 9V in stead of 6V. The camera load makes the voltage drop easily. The motor will last just as long.
These cameras are built like a tank and will probably last even longer.

Finally a dead EL camera is a rare find. Provided you get some juice into the body it will live almost 100% certain.

Someone on the 'bay sells a 4 cell battery pack with an attached DIN connector which will power the EL or ELM. I bought one a couple of years ago for about $35. A better device I bought from fotodiox was a CRP2 battery adapter that fits in the battery chamber. About $30.
I converted a couple of ELMs a few years ago to 9v. I don't recall the exact process, but it involved a piece of plastic tubing fat enough to hold the battery, bits of wire and a batt connector. Couple of dollars total. Motors worked fine, made the camera advance a bit faster than the standard battery.
The "4 cell battery pack with an attached DIN connector which will power the EL or ELM" is one of the most unelegant devices I have seen for the Hasselblad EL-series. The battery compartment of the camera is big enough for a multitude of alternative solutions if one does not want the original accus. There are inserts available that allow to use cheap 9V batteries or more expensive Li-batteries. The nicest solution is to convert to 5 AA-batteries using original parts. This has been done to all my 500 EL/M- and 500 ELX-bodies except to the 500 EL from 1965 which is kept in original condition.

I agree with Ulrik only wish he did not buy all those original kits for his EL cameras.
I am still looking for a replacement batteryholder for my 553 ELX.
The former owner forgot to take out the batteries while he stored the camera too long.
The battery compartment was ruined. I still need the plastic insert.

Five years ago I made a "conversion" by simply fitting a small connector that
clips on a 9V block battery inside one of the openings of the battery compartment.

I used some foam to place the battery inside the camera to prevent it from rattling.
These batteries last at least 2000 exposures and are the least expensive alternative
for the original rechargeable batteries.
Besides that the 9V block is generally available.

Many thanks for your advises.
I first fed 6V to the body using the + battery contact at the botton of the battery compartment and - at the tip of the fuse. The motor ran perfectly.
Then I closed the lid and powered the body connecting + to pin one of the DIN connector, and - to pin 5.
Replacement batteries are available from B&H, but are quite expensive compared to alternate replacement solution, specially if you consider the B&H batteries capacity (500mAh).
C (LR14) lithium batteries are available. Each one is 3.6V. A very simple adaptation can convert the body connection of the two batteries from parrallel to serie. I'll work on this solution and get back to explain what I did.
Another clue: a 35mm film cartrige plastic box fits into each battery housing...